MANUKURA – Restoration Update

MANUKURA – Restoration Update

During my frequent visits to Thames I used to see Manukura the 50’ c.1960 Shipbuilders built launch on the hard stand at the Thames marina, always looking a little sad. Then in 2021 we got the good news she had a new owner and work had recommenced on her restoration, and that the plan was to transport Manukura to Whangamata where the work would be finished. Link here to her history and time in Thames.

I was contacted earlier in the week by owner Allen Watson who advised that Manukura is in the process of a major refit. All new wiring, plumbing, gear boxes, shafts, engine mounts for the Ford 120hp 6 cyl diesel engines plus a new lay out inside. The photo gallery above gives us a peek into the work.

Photo below is dated July 2021 

Clevedon Woody Mooching

Lady Gazelle
Mystery Couldrey

Clevedon Wood Mooching

Had a good excuse to point the car south yesterday so took a side trip to Clevedon and mooched around one of the ‘private’ docks.

Very pleased to see that work is underway of Lady Gazelle, you may recall back in March she came to grief during Cyclone Gabrille (WW story link below) – a new owner has stepped up and we look forward to her relaunch.

The mystery Couldrey has been put out graze but is all rugged up for winter. Last appeared on WW back in August 2022 – link below

I spotted the 36’  c.1950’s launch – Antares , one of the better looking launches to come out of the Supreme Craft factory. More on her a future story. Previous WW story and lots of photos here

Also a few boats, below, looking unlikely to see the ocean again.

JOMARLI – A Peek Down Below

JOMARLI – A Peek Down Below

Todays woody is the 32’ launch – Jomarli, designed and built in 1959 by Jack Taylor. She has a beam of 10’6” and draws 3’. A 120hp Ford Lehman Diesel engine gives Jomarli a comfortable cruising speed of 7>9 knots.

From the above photos ex a recent tme listing (thanks Ian McDonald) we can see she is well appointed . I believe she has since sold.


Ocean Star – A Floating Apartment

OCEAN STAR – A Floating Apartment

Todays woody – Ocean Star, is probably the cheapest apartment / home that you could buy in NZ at the moment. The fact Ocean Star has a bath backs up the owners ‘live aboard’ claim 🙂

Ocean Star is 55’ in length, with a 15’ beam. Built in kauri to a Jack Guard design in c.1950.

If you wanted to leave the mooring a 160hp Detroit 471 diesel engine is below decks. As per the photos she is very well fitted out and at $135k ono seems a bargain. The price includes her Tauranga waterfront mooring.

Thanks to Ian McDonald for the tme listing heads up.

I see in the comments section that she in a previous life was a Govt. vessel servicing the Hauraki Gulf islands – can we learn more about her work-boat days.

15-05-2023 UPDATE: Photo below ex Chris Rabey, sent in by Russell Ward


Freedom DN.33 – A Peek Down Below

FREEDOM DN 33 – A Peek Down Below

Regular WW readers will know that I have a soft spot for converted workboats, Todays woody – Freedom started life as a cray boat, built from kauri in 1956 by Millers in Lyttelton and fished out of Dunedin. Later (date unknown) converted to a live-aboard.

Thanks to Ian McDonald giving us a heads up on a tme feature we get to have a look below. Freedom is 40’ in length and powered by a 1970’s 120hp Ford diesel engine. Being a southern lass, she sports a Dickensen heater – we like those 🙂

Can we learn more about Freedom



WW was recently contacted by Eric Sanderson in regard to his uncles boat – Lady Fay. Best if Eric tells us the story – 

“The hull was built by  Orams and Davies Whangarei in the early 1950’s and finished off by my uncle Jack Sanderson with twin 3 cylinder Lister motors fitted.                                            Orams also build the Irene around the same time, either a year later or year before. The owners were good friends of Uncle Jack.

Lady Fay fished commercially out of Whangarei till 1967 and was sold to a car salesman or someone in the trade, and went to Auckland. Not sure of their name, then 2-3 years later boat was put into Ship Builders for a complete make over, the  Listers were removed and two Fords were put in and a bridge deck was added. This I was told  by another Uncle who lived in Auckland at the time. Must be some one from Ship Builders in the 1970’s will remember Lady Fays make over.

Boat was then named – Arthur Daley, I have talked to a owner in late 1980’s early 1990’s and he did not want to know his boat was 20 years older than he thought, and was sure it was build in the 1970’s, which fits in with when it went to Ship Builders for it transformation to bridge-decker. 

I believe the boat is now named Compass Rose and is still in Auckland and for sale.

So woodys can we help Eric fill in any gaps and and history on the vessel. (sorry about the photos – very poor quality)

06-05-2023 INPUT EX ASHLEY SIM – As previously mentioned by Alan Keane – the broker I bought Arthur Daley through – I purchased her in 1993 from Greg and did quite a bit of work on Her. The twin Fords had quite a vibration so I installed rubber engine mounts and it made a big difference. They were sweat running engines with lovely controls. I also fitted out the forward cabin with a double berth and extra head. I sold her in 1995 – through Alan – to her current owner.

NEW COLOUR WAY – limited run                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               1. One size fits all  2.100% canvas/cotton, 6 panel, adjustable brass clasp  3. Colour is camel with dark brown embroidered logo. 4. Tonal under peak lining.

Price is $38 (gst inclusive) + $5 p&p 

What’s next – email me at & advise:

# Your name 

# Postal address

# Phone 

# Quantity

Endeavour -Re-Launched

ENDEAVOUR Re-Launched 

Yesterday the A. Couldrey designed / Brin Wilson built launch – Endeavour, slipped back into the water at the Slipway Milford after some serious TLC, still  a few jobs to complete on the list and maybe a topsides paint job – but she is looking so smart with her coamings varnished.

You can read / see more on the project here.

Milford Yard Update



Lots of woody activity at the Slipway Milford. The launch – Dauntless being hauled for a quick dose of TLC, more on her here

The 1953 A Couldrey designed, Brin Wilson built launch – Endeavour , under tent, is coming to the end of her refresh – most impressed with the new name board on the stern – nice touch. The gent in the photo is Luca Beachman, the great grandson of her original owner, Borrie Beachman and has been beavering away on the project – no doubt securing his future path to ownership 😉 More on her here

Just across the yard at the Milford Cruising Club slip – the launch Ngahi, photo below, was being relaunched after an extensive re- fit/refurbishment – hopefully we will see interior photos soon. More here




Yesterday I came across this amazing photo / plan on Lew Redwoods fb – it originally appeared in the NZ Herald on 7th December 1955.

Up there with the ‘how come we missed out on a waterfront sports arena a few years ago – probably see answer – stifled by small minded Auckland City Council bureaucrats.

In 1955, plans were being discussed to turn the Meola Reef, Westmere, Auckland area into, well, basically the Western Springs version of the Wynyard Quarter.

Shipbuilding firm Roy Lidgard Ltd proposed to the City Council and Auckland Harbour Board “a beautiful marine base in the Waitemata Harbour between Westmere and Pt Chevalier.

There would be no big boat building on the site, and buildings put up to service yachts and launches would be of pleasing design, surrounded by trees, shrubs and lawns.” There would have been American-style jetties, parking for 220 cars on the peninsula, at least six tennis courts, a club pavilion, and a small beach on the opposite side of the boat installations.

It fell through, of course, and has wound up in the collection of “Ideas that never quite made it off the drawing board” in Auckland’s history.

Inaugural Southern Lakes Classic & Historic Boat Gathering

Proud owners of proxy. 40 historic and classical boats from all over the South Island gathered in Queenstown at the weekend for the inaugural Southern Lakes Classic & Historic Boat Event, which included a mass cruise behind the TSS Earnslaw.Click out this ODT link to view / read a report on the day



The designer / builder of the 33’ launch Spindrift is unknown, but the date is c.1954. Built from Canadian ply (what ever that is) her cabin tops has been glassed.

Forward motion is via a 1980 110HP Ford diesel, that gives her top speed of 10 knots.

Current home is swing mooring at ‘The Grove’ ( head of Queen Charlotte Sound). Prior to this she spent some years in Motueka.

Purchased by her current family in 1996 she made a trip down the coast to Akaroa and underwent an extensive but sensitively crafted refit in 1997. Then returned to Queen Charlotte Sound where she has spent her years exploring both Marlborough and Pelorus Sounds.

Today we get a look aboard thanks to Ian McDonald spot her on tme.